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Study found that Fertilization destabilizes Global Grassland Ecosystems

Feb 20, 2014 14:14 IST

A new research study named Nutrient Network (NutNet) published in the third week of February 2014 says that use of fertilizers in farming and industries have destabilizing effects on global grassland ecosystems. The study was carried out by an international team of researchers and scientists from Lancaster University and University of Minnesota, who found that the natural ecosystem creates more stable ecosystems overtime, because of less synchronized growth of pants.

The conclusion on the study was compiled, when the team was exploring the theory that whether spread of fertilizer by farmers when coupled with the atmospheric nitrogen is brought back to the ground through rainfall has an effect on the grassland. The team found destabilization of the natural eco-system as a result.

The team discovered that the balance output of the ecological safety net on addition of fertilizer was upset across diverse grassland as the various organisms in those disappeared.  The team assessed the effect of fertilizer on 41 sites across 5 continents. The experimental network included eco-systems from alpine areas of China to Serengeti in Tanzania.

This study was the first international experiment of this size with the use of naturally occurring sites. This study was made possible following a grass-roots campaign named NutNet (Nutrient Network) and supported by scientists to carry out an ecology research. This study was published in the international journal Nature.

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